Hey remember a couple years ago when sports was fun? I don’t. It’s always been misery and false hope (Sharks marketing team, get on that slogan: “Sharks hockey! Misery and false hope!”). But that was personal misery and false hope. I didn’t typically have to think about the structures of dipshittery and terribleness that permeates most of our society when watching a 1-1 February road game where the Sharks and Blue Jackets put up 30 shots total and both goals were scored on bad line change breakaways. I had mental barriers set up that blocked off the parts of my brain that stored memories of Sports I Like from thoughts about Institutions That Destroy Our Humanity.
But we’re well on our way slipping down a steeper-than-expected slope toward complete chaos where each and every aspect of our lives is revealed to be as awful as the humorless and shrill hater you end up having to talk to way too long at a party thinks.
“Oh, you like hockey. I’ve always thought of it as a sport for quiet racists.”
“Oh, you think democracy can affect positive change. I’ve always thought of it as a pageant for corporatist media manipulation and hegemony.”
“Oh you like your job. I’ve always thought of work in a capitalist society as being a way of breaking the underclass.”
“Oh you like dogs....”
I could argue those points one by one, but the Penguins are going to the White House to dutifully stroke Trump’s ego—but don’t infer anything political from that!—and lip service about inclusion aside, I suspect every single NHL team would probably fall in line if they were in the same situation.
What I’m trying to say is...
I already way miss Patrick Marleau
Look, you didn’t owe San Jose shit. As much as you’ve been beloved, you’ve also been used as a chip for the various other factions internally, among the media (hi, Kevin Kurz! I’m not paying to read you or Tim Kawakami!), and among the fans. This goes back to stripping you of the C after Heartbreaking Early Playoff Loss number 3? 4? 784? I can’t even remember. It continued after each spring exit. It came back big time after the reverse sweep against the Kings, and stayed at a low-level since then.
You got offered gobs of money to be the 4th or 5th most important piece of a contending team in Toronto. All the Sharks had to offer was being the 4th or 5th most important piece of a playoff bubble team on a team-friendly deal. Take that money, Patty! Buy a couple nice knit sweater vests for yourself! If taking that deal means you have to occasionally be the target of a hit piece in the press by the likes of gigantic corncob Steve Simmons, sobeit. You might get a Cup out of this, which would make me smile for a few seconds as I inhale the exhaust fumes in my garage.
I have almost nothing to say about the Flyers
Philadelphia sports fans are almost entirely garbage people, but I have trouble even conjuring up any particular animosity toward the Flyers themselves these days. It was funny when they wouldn’t fix their goaltending every single year and then lose because of goaltending. It was funny when they’d load up on idiotic, slow, hulking assault aficionados right after the NHL started modifying the rules to encourage speed and skill. It was even sort of funny watching them directly and indirectly give the Kings their only good players for bird seed and a pat on the head, in a grim sort of way. Now? They’re going to ruin Shayne Gostisbehere before he’s turned 25. They’re almost completely done ruining Claude Giroux. I like Wayne Simmonds, so it’s nice they’re giving him all that ice time. I dunno, man.
I’m not going to do a post for every single Sharks game
82 games is a lot, and trying to write something funny 3 times a week is exhausting at my advanced age. I’d much prefer to play pinochle and order the sundowner value meal and get my estate in order so as not to be a burden (I’m willing Megalodon my Cheechoo signed puck, Stace my throwback jersey, Dunn my leftover pills). Plus I’m not getting paid for this shit so I do it on my own schedule, and SB Nation can refer to the tattoo on my taint that says “monetize THIS fan-created content” if they have a problem with that.
That being said, if your writing is funny and you want to help out, let me know.